The Jacksonville Jaguars signed former Detroit Lions cornerback Robert Massey and released tight end Craig Keith today. Terms and length of Massey's contract were not disclosed.
Massey, 29, played in all 16 games last season, starting three times, as he usually served as Detroit's nickel back. He had a game-high 11 tackles ‹ one off his career-high ‹ November 5 at Atlanta. He started the team's season opener at right cornerback, and also started one game at strong safety. For the season, Massey made 50 tackles (40 solo), with three passes defensed. He was released by the Lions on March 29.
An eight-year veteran, Massey was a second-round draft choice of the the New Orleans Saints in 1989, and he played there for two seasons, starting all 32 games. He was traded to the Phoenix Cardinals in 1991, playing there three seasons and making the Pro Bowl in 1992, the year he tied an NFL record by returning three interceptions for touchdowns. He was signed by the Lions as an unrestricted free agent prior to the 1994 season. Over his career, Massey has started 77 of 101 games played. He has 14 career interceptions. A graduate of North Carolina Central, Massey earned Division II All-America honors after intercepting 19 passes as a senior. He is a native of Charlotte, N.C.
Keith, 24, played in 11 games for the Jaguars in 1995 with two starts in two-tight end sets. He caught three passes for 20 yards. Keith was acquired in a trade with the Pittsburgh Steelers on August 26 in exchange for a seventh-round draft choice. In three NFL seasons, he has played in 28 games and caught three passes.
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The Jacksonville Jaguars also reached a verbal agreement today with offensive tackle Pat Walsh, a rookie free agent. Walsh is a 6-9, 350-pound lineman out of Connecticut. He is the 10th player to reach a verbal agreement with the Jaguars since the end of the draft Sunday night.